Native support for IBM mainframe in Dynatrace provides end-to-end visibility and AI-powered answers

Mainframes power 30 billion transactions a day and are used by 71 percent of Fortune 500 companies. And while those enterprises are moving applications to modern cloud stacks for agility and competitive advantage, these applications often still depend on critical transactions and ‘crown jewels’ customer data residing on IBM Z mainframes. This puts pressure on these resources to perform tasks that were not envisioned when the mainframes were launched.

However, for many organizations, back-end technology layers create blind spots in their current approach to monitoring. This makes it hard to identify, analyze and resolve performance problems, which can endanger key business transactions and impact users. A lack of visibility can also result in runaway MIPS usage costs that can reach into hundreds of thousands of dollars due to inefficiencies and errors that go unseen.

Dynatrace extends AI-powered software intelligence platform to hybrid mainframe environments

By providing a holistic solution with automatic discovery and transaction mapping from mainframe to cloud, Dynatrace customers can optimize new services, catch performance degradations before user impact, and understand exactly who has been impacted by an incident. OneAgent has come to master z/OS and it’s GA! We recently introduced several code modules that provide out-of-the-box code-level insight for each mainframe transaction.

Here’s what you can do with our GA code modules for z/OS:

Beyond just providing code visibility (for DB2 and DL/I as well), our Dynatrace z/OS modules leverage the Dynatrace Davis AI and automated root-cause analysis with zero configuration required.

Also we extended the support for a range of integration and middleware technologies such as Tibco BusinessWorksMuleSoftIBM Integration BusIBM MQ and IBM DataPower to ensure that organizations no longer have blind spots in their enterprise cloud environments.

See it all, in context

Welcome z/OS to Smartscape! As with all other technologies monitored by Dynatrace, Smartscape auto-discovery delivers a quick and efficient overview of all the topological dependencies in your environment.

  • At the Hosts level, Dynatrace shows the physical mainframe or logical partitions (LPARs).
  • Processes represents the CICS and the IMS regions themselves.
  • Services shows each interaction with a region and how those service calls are connected.

IBM z/OS in Smartscape

Who’s calling?

While mainframe performance tuning has been a well-known discipline for decades, efficient application performance management requires that you have the ability to follow transactions end to end to understand which services, applications, and user actions trigger which mainframe program calls.

For example, if you’re interested in knowing which service called the region “ET01” in the past two hours, you can now search the Transactions & services page and click Analyze backtrace to find the answer.

To check a CICS service's call to a region

As you can see below, Dynatrace shows all calls to this region, up to the application and user actions. This is available 24×7 for all transactions in your production environments.

In-depth analysis at the source-code level

Dynatrace not only captures Service flow data, but thanks to PurePath technology, you also get code-level visibility into each CICS and IMS service, including database statements to DB2 or DL/I (see second image below)!

CICS service flow

CICS PurePath

Deployment and architecture

While OneAgent auto-detection and auto-instrumentation is an ideal solution for distributed environments, it isn’t appropriate for highly-regulated mainframes. Therefore we came up with an easy-to-install and lightweight architecture that minimizes the footprint while maximizing control and performance.

Dynatrace architecture for z/OS

The detailed installation process will be sent to you when you accept our invitation to join the Early Access Program.

Supported technology and version information

  • CICS and IMS support is available with Dynatrace SaaS and Managed versions 1.164.
  • z/OS versions 2.2 / 2.3 are supported.
  • DB2 11 and 12
  • For CICS, the following technologies are supported:
    • IBM MQ 8.0 / 9.0
    • CICS Transaction Server 5.1 / 5.2 / 5.3 / 5.4 / 5.5 open beta
    • CICS Transaction Gateway  9.0 / 9.1 / 9.2
    • CICS SOAP over HTTP
    • CICS DLI
    • CICS MQ Bridge
  • For IMS, the following technologies are supported:
    • IBM MQ 8.0 / 9.0
    • IMS 13 / 14 / 15
    • IMS MQ Bridge
    • IMS MQ Trigger Monitor
    • IMS MSC
    • IMS Shared Queues
    • IMS Soap Gateway 3.2
    • IMS Enterprise Suite 3.2
    • IMS Connect API 3.2
    • IMS TM Resource Adapter 13 / 14 / 15

Limitations

  • IBM Integration Bus support is available for Windows, Linux, and AIX.
  • IBM mainframe agents don’t provide host metrics.

What’s next?

A OneAgent for zLinux is planned for June 2019 with support for IBM Integration Bus, Java, and IBM HTTP Server.

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